By Tony Bradley, chair of the CIPR benevolent fund, iprovision.
It’s that time of the year when iprovision publishes its annual report and accounts. Like many organisations, particularly registered charities, our report has to follow certain formats and guidelines. It can serve to make the report quite dull.
I’ve added a statement from the chairman to this year’s report and have looked to make that a little less formal – you can read our 2020 report here. But one thing I need to say, outside of the formality of an annual report, is thank you.
Thank you to all the CIPR members who have contributed their £10 per year to our cause, and who have taken part in Zoom quizzes, regional meetings and seminars held to support our work.
And this year, our work has included funding the CIPR’s professionally-staffed mental health hotline, as well as all the material that is available via the supporting online resource centre.
Hundreds of CIPR members have downloaded those resources or taken advantage of the support available from BACP-accredited counsellors.
We have also built on our partnership with a specialist arm of the Citizen’s Advice Bureau, one which looks to guide people through the maze of potential welfare benefits and provide expert advice to help people get on top of, and manage, their financial affairs. By sponsoring access to that service we are able to fast-track support for our eligible members.
In what has been a challenging year for many, it is not surprising that we saw an increase in claimants in 2020.
In nearly every case, whatever the root cause of their problems, the struggle to make ends meet was the catalyst that brought people to our door.
As a result, the Citizen’s Advice Bureau partnership really came into its own and every single beneficiary that we referred to the service said it had made a real difference to them and had been so very helpful in enabling them to get their lives back on track.
Sometimes, our help takes on a rather more solid form. As an example, we’ve not only provided laptops for work, but also to help some of our claimants’ children during a year of home schooling.
What this means is that not only do we thank you, but so too do all those, and their children, who have been supported and helped by iprovision and our various services this year. It means a lot to them, and it means a lot to us to have the support of CIPR members.
Finally, we stand by ready to support members should any face difficulty when all the Government-backed support schemes expire. The last couple of years have been hard for many people even with Government support, but it is likely to be that much harder when it is withdrawn.
So, thank you once again for your support, but also don’t forget we’re here to help. And if you, or anyone you know, is facing potential hardship or a difficult situation, our support is available at the end of phone line.